Dissertation

After all of the above requirements have been satisfied, a student may form a dissertation committee. These normally consist of three faculty members, with one designated as the chair. At least two members of the committee, one of them the chair, must be members of CHSS. The student chooses the committee, subject to the approval of the Chair of CHSS and the agreement of the faculty involved. Once the committee has been formed, the student will work with its members to develop a dissertation proposal and will defend the latter in a proposal hearing when the committee thinks the student ready. The exact day and time of the hearing should be arranged by the student in consultation with the members of the committee and the Chair of CHSS. The hearing is open to all CHSS faculty and so it should not be scheduled for any time when many are likely to be away (i.e., not during the summer quarter, or between quarters). The student must inform the CHSS administrative assistant of the day and time chosen, and do so sufficiently far in advance that it is possible for the administrative assistant to notify the faculty, and get copies of the proposal to them, a full two weeks in advance of the hearing. If the proposal is approved at the hearing, the student will be considered to have advanced to “Ph.D. candidacy.”

Once the student submits a completed dissertation, and the chair of the dissertation committee secures agreement from all members that it is ready to be defended, a dissertation defense may be scheduled. The exact day and time should be arranged by the student in consultation with the members of the committee and the Chair of CHSS. As with the proposal hearing, the defense should not be scheduled for any time when many faculty are likely to be away (i.e., not during the summer quarter, or between quarters). The student must inform the CHSS secretary of the day and time chosen, and give the administrative assistant both a copy of the dissertation and a short written summary (on the order of 5 to 10 pages). He or she must do so sufficiently far in advance that it is possible for the administrative assistant to notify the faculty, and get copies of the summary to them, a full two weeks in advance of the defense. The faculty present at the defense make the final decision on whether to accept the dissertation.